Newborn baby becomes youngest organ donor

When they heard the devastating news that one of their twin boys would not make it due to a birth defect, they made the decision to donate his organs.

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  • The news every parent dreads is hearing there is something wrong with their unborn baby. One family received this news, but turned it into something amazing.

  • When Jess and Mike Houlston found they were expecting twins, they discovered one of the boys, Teddy, had anencephaly—a disorder where parts of the skull and brain are missing—which would only give Teddy hours or days to live. His brother, Noah, was healthy. They were obviously devastated with the news.

  • "Following Teddy's diagnosis we had some time to acclimatize to what might happen, therefore we decided early on as a family that we would want to go ahead with the pregnancy and donate his organs if this was possible," Jess said. "It was helping us that he could go on and live through someone else. It was the only positive thing that could have come out of here."

  • They were able to spend a couple of precious hours with Teddy before he died and donated his organs. His kidneys were used to save the life of an adult recipient and the others were successfully transplanted.

  • Though Teddy didn't have a chance to live life, his brief time on earth allowed him to make a huge difference in many other lives.

  • Many families have made the difficult choice to donate their loved one's organs after their unexpected death. Watch these two videos of tender meetings between the families and the organ recipients—and grab your tissues!

  • "This family gets to hear their son's heartbeat one last time."

  • "One family's tragedy becomes another family's miracle."

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Wendy is a regular contributor for and does media reviews. Website: for victims of sexual abuse. Blog: Twitter: @WendyJessen


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